Stars Appear In New York Times Video With Pomellato To Celebrate International

first_imgTo support and honor womankind, Pomellato and The New York Times collaborate to spread a message of positive female empowerment for International Women’s Day (March 8th).Pomellato Women’s Day AmbassadorsThrough a NYT article detailing important milestones in the women’s movement, and a Pomellato video with an international cast of powerful women, the new partnership champions female achievements, leadership, and gender equality.Published on March 8th, The New York Times ( article explores the key historical moments in women’s rights during the 20th and 21st centuries, and how these civic changes have influenced present day. From a woman’s right to vote, to today’s viral phenomena such as the #MeToo and #TimesUp hashtags, the article features historical summaries, photography, NYT archive links, and the Pomellato commemorative video.Interviewing Pomellato advocates from a variety of countries, generations and backgrounds, the video features women who define empowerment. Mobilizing celebrities, PomellatoForWomen ambassadors, and other powerful female voices, the video stars Aure Atika, Sabina Belli – Pomellato CEO, Kitty Cash, Stephanie Cayo, Caroline Corbetta, Clotilde Courau, Lisa Edelstein, Chiara Ferragni, Jane Fonda, Virginia Gardner, Isabel Getty, Roxine Helberg, Anjelica Huston, Virginie Ledoyen, J.J. Martin, Helen Nonini, Alexandra Richards, Ece Sükan, Anne-Sophie von Claer and Chu Wong. Viewable on,, and social media, the women share their personal accomplishments, fears, challenges, joys and hopes for the future, while offering womankind a choral message of hope, empowerment and unity.Founded in 1967, a revolutionary time for women’s independence, Pomellato jewelry was created with the empowered female in mind. As women flocked to the workforce in numbers never seen before, their daily roles and needs evolved. Pomellato recognized that the independent woman would need a more functional, versatile jewel to wear from workday to evening, and the prêt-a-porter jewelry concept was born. Since, Pomellato has been known as the brand that designs for women. 74% of the Milanese jeweler’s workforce is female, most of its clientele are women buying jewels for themselves. The PomellatoForWomen campaign was launched in 2017, to feature an inclusive cross-section of real-life women from various disciplines, ages and arts. Acting as bearers of Pomellato values, these inspirational women promote a more authentic idea of natural beauty.last_img read more

Ban outlines social benefits of ensuring women have access to education

26 May 2011Secretary-Ban Ki-moon today underlined the huge benefits societies reap from ensuring that girls and women have access to education, saying the opportunity to acquire knowledge creates a new generation of mothers who in turn raise educated and empowered young women. “Education sends a message – a message of confidence and hope. It tells that child; you have a future; what you think matters,” Mr. Ban said at the launch of the Global Partnership for Girls’ and Women’s Education at the Paris headquarters of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).According to UNESCO, there are an estimated 39 million girls of lower secondary school age across the world not enrolled in either primary or secondary school. Two thirds of the world’s 796 million illiterate adults are women, and only about a third of countries have achieved gender parity in secondary school enrolment.“Education is a right, but it is not a reality for too many women and girls. Too often the cause is discrimination. That is why we must fight back against unequal and unfair treatment,” said the Secretary-General.“The new Global Partnership we are launching today focuses on two key points; secondary education and literacy. Both pay great dividends for individuals and society. Educating women and girls reduces fertility. It improves productivity,” he added.The partnership, whose theme is “Better Life, Better Future,” focuses on reaching illiterate or semi-literate adolescent girls and scaling up women’s literacy programmes through partnerships with corporate giants such as Nokia, Procter and Gamble, GEMS Education, Microsoft, Apple and the Packard Foundation. Some of the projects have already started in Africa and Asia.UNESCO also inaugurated a High-Level Panel on Women’s Empowerment and Gender Equality to step up global advocacy and work as a “global conscience” for gender equality, with a specific focus on education. read more

MR says Government has killed hundred birds with one stone

“The Central bank bond scam has been forgotten. The debt crisis has been forgotten. Some of those injured in the Easter Sunday attacks are still in hospital but they too have been forgotten. There is now no talk about extremists. The searches have stopped. The discovery of weapons has ceased. There is no talk of the steps being taken with regard to the terrorist suspects arrested. Thus, the government has killed about a hundred birds with one stone,” Rajapaksa said in a statement today. “The UNP needs the votes of the moderates as well as the extremists within the Muslim community. They don’t care where their votes come from. The Muslim leaders for their part, want a government they can manipulate at will. But this confluence of interests will not solve the problem that the ordinary Muslims of this country face today. The ordinary people of this country want protection from extremists terorists. The ordinary Muslim folk in this country want to weed out the terrorists from their midst and to resume their normal lives,” he said.Rajapaksa also said that due to the emergence of exclusively Muslim political parties from the 1980s onwards, Muslims isolated themselves in the political sphere and the en masse resignation of Muslim Ministers marks a high point in this process. (Colombo Gazette) Leader of the opposition Mahinda Rajapaksa says the Government has killed hundred birds with one stone.He said that public attention has been distracted by the recent en mase resignations by Muslim Ministers and the Government has managed to sweep many issues under the carpet. He also said that the United National Party (UNP) is making good use of the Muslim community for their political purposes. read more

Ukraine UN agency begins cash assistance programme to meet food needs in

“We are using cash transfers, in areas where banks and markets are functioning, to restore some normalcy to people’s otherwise shattered lives,” said WFP’s Representative in Ukraine Giancarlo Stopponi. Both cash and food voucher assistance allow people to go to the market and pick the food they prefer, which includes fresh vegetables, meat, poultry and dairy products – items not normally included in traditional food ration.“It also gives a boost to markets and injects money into the local economy,” added Mr. Stopponi.The first round of cash distributions began in northern Lugansk region through WFP’s partner, Mercy Corps. Each person will receive the equivalent of approximately $20.50 per month to purchase food. Around 140,000 people will be provided with either cash transfers or vouchers.WFP has expanded its emergency operation to provide food assistance for more than 575,000 people until the end of the year. This includes 20,000 children who will receive locally-purchased supplementary food assistance for a period of six months to prevent a further deterioration of their nutritional status and health.WFP was previously providing food assistance to close to 200,000 people. The conflict in eastern Ukraine has affected 5 million people so far, including at least 1.7 million children. WFP prioritizes the most vulnerable population groups amongst residents, returnees, internally displaced persons and host communities and children at risk of malnutrition. read more

Bradley Roby receives mixed reaction after Orange Bowl absence

Redshirt-junior cornerback Bradley Roby walks out of the tunnel in sweatpants before the 2014 Discover Orange Bowl Jan. 3 at Sun Life Stadium. OSU lost, 40-35.Credit: Shelby Lum / Photo editorWhen it comes to sports, anyone who watches and cheers for a particular player or team has the opportunity to formulate their own opinions.Some teams and players get more attention than others, and when it came to the 2013 Ohio State Buckeyes, it is difficult to find a player more widely criticized or loved than redshirt-junior cornerback Bradley Roby.Upon taking the field on Senior Day Nov. 23 before the Buckeyes took on Indiana, Roby was subjected to a loud mix of both cheers and boos from Buckeye Nation.Just three days before, OSU coach Urban Meyer confirmed that Roby, a projected first-round pick by CBSSports, would forego his final year of eligibility.This seemed to only be the beginning of what has become an enthralling saga of OSU’s star cornerback.After suffering a knee injury late in his team’s 34-24 loss in Big Ten Championship Game against Michigan State Dec. 7, the All-American’s status was unclear for the 2014 Discover Orange Bowl against Clemson. Roby ultimately did not suit up against the Tigers because of the injury, resulting in backlash from OSU fans on social media.Fans berated Roby before, during and after the Orange Bowl on Twitter, and the name-calling has continued, to some fans still calling him a p—- and saying he quit on his team as recent as Monday.Roby offered a stern response early Saturday morning on Twitter.“The fact that people tweeting at me sayin all this negativity is crazy to me,” the tweet, published after 1 a.m., read. “It makes me ashamed to even have played for y’all.”Not everything was negative, though, as Roby sent another tweet just two minutes later thanking members of the OSU fan base for their support.“To the true fans I truly appreciate it the support you have given me and this team over the years,” the tweet read.The disrespect toward Roby was so bad that ESPN college football analyst and former Buckeye quarterback Kirk Herbstreit offered his support.“Hey man. I’m sorry you or any player has to be subjected to ridiculous fans like that. Keep ur head up & stay positive,” Herbstreit’s tweet sent to Roby’s personal account, @BradRoby_1, read.No one will ever know if Roby’s presence on the field against the Tigers during the Orange Bowl would have given OSU what it needed to win the game. But his replacement, sophomore cornerback Armani Reeves, was beaten by Clemson junior wide receiver Martavis Bryant for two touchdowns in the game.Regardless of what everyone was saying about him playing or not, Roby responded with yet another tweet later Saturday, giving thanks to those fans who supported him.“S/O to the REAL Buckeyenation for showing so much love,” the tweet read. “We truly have the best fans in the land! And I enjoyed playing for you.”Whether Roby will have a successful NFL career remains to be seen, but as he and OSU’s season came to a close early Saturday morning, he surely left his mark. read more

Weather warning downgraded but 110kmh winds expected

first_imgMET ÉIREANN HAS downgraded its national weather warnings to status yellow this morning – but that doesn’t mean that we can expect things to die down.There is still a wind warning in place for Donegal, Galway, Leitrim, Mayo, Sligo, Munster, Leinster, Cavan and Monaghan.Met Éireann warns that people should expect southwest winds of 45 to 55km/h, with gusts of up to 110 km/h occasionally.It will be cold and blustery today, and we can expect frequent showers across the west, with a long spell of rain in the south of the country at around midday. Tonight, there will be more showers, and some ground frost inland.Wrap up warm today and tonight – highest temperatures are expected to reach only 7 degrees.AA Roadwatch has said that there have been reports of heavy snow around Mountmellick, which is causing delays.The M7 Dublin/Limerick Road is extremely slippery between junctions 23 and 22 due to heavy snow, and there are slippery conditions on the N17 between Collooney and Knock.In Cork, there are “very slippery conditions” on the N71 Kenmare/Clonakilty Rd, AA Roadwatch said.Gardaí said that they were busy yesterday evening but things calmed down overnight. While there have been a number of crashes, no major road incidents have been reported.Yesterday, Cork’s Kent Railway Station was struck by wind that cause a roof to collapse.The station has now partially reopened, and Irish Rail said that full services will operate this morning.It said that services to and from Heuston, Cobh and Midleton are operating but may be subject to minor delays.There will be no car parking available in the main station car park due to the closure of the Lower Glanmire Road, but parking will be availabe in the car park off Railway Street.Services will operate from platforms three, four and five only, and platforms one and two will remain closed until further notice.Read: 7,000 without power after bad weather brings electricity lines down>last_img read more

Fugitive taunts cops on Facebook they catch him

first_imgHere’s a tip: don’t taunt police on your Facebook page if you’re on a 10 Most Wanted list. You’d think that would be common sense, but it looks like one man was apparently not aware of that. After facing criminal charges in upstate New York, Victor Burgos, 29, fled to Brooklyn to get away from the cops.For some odd reason, Burgos had it in his head that he was impervious to the law and decided to taunt the Utica police on Faceboook with a message that said: “Catch me if you can. I’m in Brooklyn.”True, Brooklyn is big, but it’s not that big. And it’s not like Burgos went into hiding in the middle of the woods, totally off the grid. It turns out that police were more than happy to do what Burgos said, and indeed, they caught him. After reading his message, they tracked him down to an apartment in Bedford-Stuyvesant and found Burgos sitting there on his computer with his Facebook page open. It looks like everything went as Burgos had planned.Police arrested Burgos and took him to Oneida County where he will face the charges related to domestic violence and harassment of his ex-girlfriend. The New York Daily News also reported that Burgos posted a video on his website that showed him walking into an NYPD stationhouse. Though the station couldn’t be identified, it’s believed it was in Brooklyn.We have no idea if Burgos honestly thought he could get away with his online boasting without eventually getting caught. Utica Police sergeant Steve Hauck said “He told us via Facebook to come and get him, and we did.”via NY Daily Newslast_img read more

Raspberry Pi revision 20 board announced

first_imgThe Raspberry Pi finally saw a release on February 29 this year and is thought to have sold 200,000 units, with a million expected to ship before the year is over. That’s a lot of tiny PCs, but it’s also been an opportunity for owners to feedback any problems or tweaks they’d like made to the board.The Raspberry Pi Foundation has taken the feedback on board and today announced a revised design is being put into production. The new Raspberry Pi, known as revision 2.0 PCB, is expected to start shipping in the next few weeks. The only way you’ll be able to tell which version you have is when you receive it, hook it up, and type “cat/proc/cpuino” in a terminal. if the code that appears is 4, 5, or 6 then you have the new board, otherwise a 2 or 3 signifies the original board.The revision includes a number of changes, but is essentially the same board. You can view the full list of changes at the link below, but to summarize it includes a new reset circuit, a replacement for the reset fuses allowing for more reliable USB hub power, two GPIO pin changes for JTAG debug support, four redundant GPIO signals have been removed, and a new connector has been added for attaching a range of boards including a clock or audio codec.Two of the more easily noticeable changes include a fix that stops the HDMI connection interfering with certain operations of the Raspberry Pi, and the addition of two 2.5mm mounting holes to allow for easier mounting.There’s no way to guarantee you’ll get the 2.0 revision board at the moment other than to wait. If it starts arriving from manufacture in the next few weeks, then it should be the only board available to buy in a couple of months based on how quickly they are selling.Read more at Raspberry Pilast_img read more

Les champignons créent du vent pour propager leurs spores

first_imgLes champignons créent du vent pour propager leurs sporesUne étude américaine a mis en évidence la façon dont certains champignons créent un véritable microclimat autour d’eux afin que des courants d’air ‘artificiels’ dispersent leurs spores.  Si les plantes utilisent tout un éventail d’astuces pour disséminer leurs graines – la gravité, le vent, l’eau, les insectes pollinisateurs et autres animaux – les champignons, qui ne sont pas des plantes, ont aussi leur petite astuce. Ces organismes savent créer de faibles courants aériens pour propager leurs spores et assurer ainsi leur reproduction. C’est ce que viennent de découvrir des spécialistes en dynamique des fluides du Trinity College de Hartford (Connecticut).À lire aussiMaladie de Charcot : symptômes, causes, traitement, où en est on ?Pour en arriver là, ces chercheurs ont utilisé des techniques de tournage vidéo à grande vitesse et de modélisation mathématique sur différentes espèces de champignons. Ils ont ainsi montré que le pleurote et le lentin du chêne libèrent de la vapeur d’eau pour refroidir et humidifier l’air qui les entoure, créant ainsi des courants de convection, c’est-à-dire des vents miniatures qui soulèvent leurs spores. Celles-ci sont alors dispersées dans un assez large rayon, même en l’absence de ‘vrai’ vent.Les champignons ne seraient donc pas les organismes ‘passifs’ que l’on imagine souvent : “notre recherche montre que ces ‘machines’ (les champignons) sont beaucoup plus complexes que cela : ils contrôlent leur environnement local et créent des vents là où il n’en existait pas dans la nature. C’est assez incroyable, mais les champignons sont des ingénieurs… ingénieux !”, souligne le Pr Emilie Dressaire, qui a dirigé cette étude présentée lors de la dernière réunion annuelle de l’American Physical Society à Pittsburgh (Pennsylvanie).Les scientifiques pensent que tous les champignons, aussi bien toxiques que comestibles, peuvent utiliser ce processus. Chez les seconds, la portion comestible du champignon est en fait la partie charnue qui porte les spores. Celles-ci, microscopiques ‘semences’ unicellulaires, peuvent être produites à des millions d’exemplaires par un seul champignon. Au moins quelques-unes seront susceptibles d’atterrir là où elles pourront se développer. Le 1 décembre 2013 à 09:57 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Program helps students hit the books in Yacolt

first_imgWhat: School library open after school for families to check out books, practice math and reading on computers, play board games.When: 4:15 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays.Where: Yacolt Primary School, 406 W. Yacolt Road, Yacolt.Information: — Carrying a bag bulging with kids’ books, Karen Homola, 31, and six of her children entered the library at Yacolt Primary School ready to choose more books. When the school day ends at Yacolt, the learning doesn’t stop. After school on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, the school’s common area becomes the Parent Educational Resource Center. It’s an opportunity for area families to check out children’s books, practice reading and math games on the library’s computers, and access the Internet. In October, 134 people came to the PERC program at Yacolt Primary.Karen Homola’s daughter Alexa, 6, a first-grader at Yacolt Primary, is the reason the family has become regulars at PERC. Karen learned about the after-school resource at a parent-teacher conference in October with Alexa’s teacher, Heidi Massie. Alexa was struggling a bit in reading and needed more practice. “Looking in our bookshelf at home, I didn’t know which books would be at her level,” Karen said.Massie had suggested the family visit the school during its PERC hours. The school’s books are arranged by reading level. That makes it easy for Alexa to choose new books each week that won’t be too hard or too easy.As Karen set down her load of books, her children made a beeline for the shelves to find new books to take home.“I want you to get level D and E,” Karen instructed Alexa. “Two of each.” But then she added: “Three level D books.”Setting her books on a table, Alexa began looking at them: “In a Dark, Dark Wood,” “Timmy” (about a cat), “On a Cold, Wet Night,” “People on the Beach,” “Worms,” “This is My Family” and a Kids Can Read book in which a parent reads one page, and the child reads the next.last_img read more

Kenai Senior Connections Raised 50000 For Meal On Wheels

first_imgIn November, the Kenai Senior Center Administrative staff, prepared and submitted a grant application to the “Subaru 50 Cars for 50 Years Vehicle Donation” and along with Homer Senior Citizens, Inc., were both awarded a 2018 Subaru Outback. Meals on Wheels is a program that delivers meals to individuals on the Kenai Peninsula at home who are unable to purchase or prepare their own meals. According to a release, the new vehicle in Kenai, will provide the program the ability to deliver an approximate 30 additional meals per month to its current 1,980 monthly meal deliveries. All of the proceeds from March for Meals go to benefit the Kenai Senior Center Meals on Wheels program. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The Kenai Senior Connections presented a $50,000 check at the Kenai City Council meeting on Wednesday, January 3, to benefit the Senior Meals on Wheels program. The $50,000 was funds obtained during the March for Meals fundraiser put on by the Kenai Senior Connection partnered with Kenai Senior Services to raise funds for the “Meals on Wheels” program locally. Story as aired: Audio PlayerJennifer-on-meals-on-wheels-money.mp3VmJennifer-on-meals-on-wheels-money.mp300:00RPdlast_img read more

Parnell Signs Abortion Bill

first_img(Photo distributed by Alaska Senate Majority)Gov. Sean Parnell has signed a bill that restricts state Medicaid payments for abortions.Download AudioThe new law puts a set of recently adopted regulations into statute, and takes them a step further. It specifies that the state will not pay for elective abortions. It also limits the term “medically necessary” to cases where a woman’s life or physical health is at risk. The regulations had included a mental health exception.The new law is expected to be challenged in court. Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union are already suing the state over the existing regulations, arguing that they violate the Constitution’s equal protection clause.Last year, the state’s Medicaid program covered about a third of the 1,500 abortions performed in Alaska.last_img read more

Wreckage of Yute Air Plane Found

first_imgThis is a developing story.Searchers have found the wreckage of the Yute Air plane that’s been missing since Saturday morning. A team Sunday evening spotted the Cessna 207 in the Kwethluk River, about 40 miles southeast of Bethel.According to the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center, a Yute pilot first spotted the downed airplane in the river at about 6:45 Sunday evening. A civil air patrol pilot confirmed the wreck moments later. Crews on a jet boat and helicopter left early today to go to the scene.Megan Peters is a spokesperson for the Alaska State Troopers.“We have our troopers as well as other agencies, including the National Transportation Safety Board, going to the site to look at the wreckage, to look at the circumstances, to hopefully recover the pilot,” said Peters.The plane left Bethel at about 8:30 Saturday morning after a maintenance check and should have been back in three hours. It never returned.Yute Air offices in Bethel were closed yesterday and remain closed today. Yute Air serves the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, providing flights for passengers and freight to more than 20 surrounding villages as well as charters around the state.Original Story:A search is on for a Yute Air pilot who did not return from a flight out of Bethel Saturday. The Alaska Rescue Coordination Center is in charge of the search and rescue operation. Troopers and others are assisting in the search.Searchers say the missing plane is a Cessna 207. According to National Transportation Safety Board officials the flight left Bethel Saturday morning after maintenance and never returned.The Alaska Department of Public Safety is providing aircraft to assist in coordination with the civil air patrol and military assets.Yute Air offices in Bethel were closed yesterday and remain closed this morning. Yute Air serves the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, providing flights for passengers and freight to more than 20 surrounding villages as well as charters around the state.Daysha Eaton contributed to this story.last_img read more

Interviews for ward volunteers begin

first_imgRajamahendravaram: Interviews were commenced for ward volunteers in the city under the aegis of Rajamahendravaram Municipal Corporation (RMC) here on Thursday. The interviews will be held for 1,278 ward volunteer posts relating to 50 divisions in the city. Commissioner Sumit Kumar said that as many as six teams were constituted for the interviews and two information centres for the benefit of candidates. The candidates who got messages through RTGS are eligible to participate in the interviews and advised them to attend to the interviews as per the date given to them. The interviews will be held between 10 am and 5 pm and asked the candidates to appear with necessary proofs. Additional commissioner NVV Satyanarayana Rao and others were present.last_img read more

9 journos among 25 killed in Afghan twin blasts

first_imgAfghan journalists are seen after a second blast in Kabul, Afghanistan on 30 April 2018. ReutersAt least 25 people were killed, including Agence France-Presse chief photographer for Afghanistan Shah Marai and eight other journalists, when two suicide blasts ripped through Kabul on Monday.The attacks, claimed by the Islamic State group, are the deadliest to have targeted the media in Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban in 2001, according to Reporters Without Borders.They spurred an outpouring of grief among journalists, many of whom took to Twitter to post tributes to colleagues and friends.Kabul police spokesman Hashmat Stanikzai said the second explosion came minutes after the first, and targeted reporters at the scene.”The bomber disguised himself as a journalist and detonated himself among the crowd,” he said.The interior ministry confirmed the death toll and said 49 people had been wounded. There were fears the death toll could rise.In a separate attack 11 children were killed and 16 people wounded, including foreign and Afghan security force members, when a suicide attacker exploded his bomb-laden car near a convoy in the southern province of Kandahar, officials said.There was no immediate claim of responsibility for that attack.In a statement Reporters Without Borders said nine journalists were killed in Kabul — Marai, along with colleagues from Radio Free Europe and Afghan broadcasters Tolo News and 1TV, among others.Marai joined AFP as a driver in 1996, the year the Taliban seized power, and began taking pictures on the side, covering stories including the US invasion in 2001.In 2002 he became a full-time photo stringer, rising through the ranks to become chief photographer in the bureau. “I taught myself photography, so I am always looking to improve,” he said in a company profile in 2015. “Now my photos appear around the world.”My best memories are when I beat the competition by getting the best photographs of the president or someone else, or from the scene of a bomb attack. I like to be first.”He leaves behind six children, including a newborn daughter.”This is a devastating blow for the brave staff of our close-knit Kabul bureau and the entire agency,” said AFP Global News director Michele Leridon.”Shah Marai was a treasured colleague who spent more than 15 years documenting the tragic conflict in Afghanistan for AFP.”We can only honour the extraordinary strength, courage, and generosity of a photographer who covered often traumatic, horrific events with sensitivity and consummate professionalism,” Leridon said.”We also send our condolences to the families of other journalists killed in this terrible attack.”Tributes from Afghan officials, analysts, and journalists were pouring in on Twitter.”NO, we can’t lose Marai, I am devastated,” former interior ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqqi wrote. Bloody summerThe first blast in Kabul came shortly before 8:00am (0330 GMT) near the headquarters of the Afghan intelligence services, when a motorcyclist detonated his explosives, the interior ministry said.It comes days after the Taliban began their spring offensive in an apparent rejection of calls for the militants to take up the Afghan government’s offer of peace talks.A Taliban spokesman told AFP they were not involved in Monday’s attack. However, Western and Afghan officials suspect that the Taliban’s Haqqani Network sometimes assists IS in carrying out attacks.In an announcement via its propaganda agency Amaq, IS, which has dramatically stepped up its attacks in Kabul in recent months, posted pictures of the attackers it claimed were responsible for the bombings.The blasts follow several bloody attacks across the country, including a bombing that targeted a voter registration centre in Kabul and killed 60 people last week.The Taliban said the offensive was partly a response to US president Donald Trump’s new strategy for Afghanistan announced last August, which gave US forces more leeway to go after insurgents.President Ashraf Ghani’s government is under pressure on multiple fronts this year as it prepares to hold long-delayed legislative elections in October, while its security forces struggle to get the upper hand on the battlefield and prevent civilian casualties.Officials have acknowledged that security is a major concern because the Taliban and other militant groups control or contest large swathes of the country.Some Western and Afghan officials expect 2018 to be a particularly bloody year.General John Nicholson, the top US and NATO commander in Afghanistan, told Tolo TV last month that he expected the Taliban to carry out more suicide attacks this fighting season.last_img read more

How Might Harvey Affect Houstonians Thoughts On Future Storms

first_imgIt’s the beginning of another hurricane season, but many Houstonians still have another storm on their minds, only nine months after Harvey.Earlier today, Harris County Judge Ed Emmett expressed his concerns that many Houstonians will view future storms through the lens of Harvey, which did not make its landfall on Greater Houston. Instead of a wind and storm surge event, Harvey — for Houston, at least — was mostly a rain and flooding event. And Judge Emmett cautioned that every storm is different.To discuss how past experiences with storms affect our perceptions and preparations going forward, Houston Matters host Craig Cohen talks with psychologist Dr. Leslie Taylor with UTHealth’s McGovern Medical School. Listen 00:00 /09:54 Share Xcenter_img Justin Sullivan/Getty Images To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:last_img read more

MCU News Iron Fist Gets a Trailer Netflix Spinoffs Original Mjolnir Mo

first_imgThe premise of the teaser is a little hokey. Danny and Colleen (more of her this season, please) walk down a New York street. Danny starts noticing things that take him back to a traumatic experience in K’un-Lun. Things like… a woman shaking out a trenchcoat and two guys high-fiving. Danny, buddy… you’ve been outside in New York, hell, you’ve been outside in general before, right? Those aren’t exactly super rare sights. But hey, you can’t blame him for carrying bad memories with him. We all still carry the trauma of having to sit through Season One.Slight silliness aside, even this teaser is a marked improvement on the series. As Danny and Colleen walk down the street, the camera isn’t shaking around like it’s strapped to a chihuahua who got into the caffeine pills. We’re not shown much of the fight he flashes back to as this is only a teaser, but we’re able to follow the action we do see. We can tell who’s hitting who, and the hits feel hard. It looks like Marvel is serious about beefing up the martial arts aspect of the martial arts series. Then there’s Danny’s overall look. He no longer looks like an insufferable Brooklyn hippie with 2000-era N*SYNC hair. Now, he looks the way he did in his appearance on Luke Cage. And that episode made Iron Fist cool. What’s really going to help this season is his mask. The actors will still largely be doing their own stunts, but Danny having the mask makes it easier to bring in a stunt double for the harder stuff. That alone should improve the quality of the fight scenes significantly.The official Iron Fist Twitter account also tweeted out the titles of each episode. Followers immediately noticed the account stopped after 10. The account later confirmed that Season Two will be only ten episodes long. That’s another promising sign that the people behind this season took all the criticism to heart. I love nearly all of these Marvel Netflix shows, but nobody’s going to deny they could all stand to be a couple of hours shorter.Charlie Cox, Mike Colter and Krysten Ritter in The Defenders (Photo: Screenshot via YouTube/Netflix)There may be plenty more Marvel Netflix series where these came from too. At the Television Critics Association, Netflix Vice President for Original Content Cindy Holland said they are considering more spinoffs. The Punisher was the first series that wasn’t one of the four announced when Marvel initially partnered with Netflix. That’s probably not going to be a one-time thing. Yeah, they probably made the right choice.Michael B. Jordan in Black Panther (Photo via Marvel)After Avengers: Infinity War, many fans were wondering where certain characters were in that final battle. For a fight so huge, with consequences so great, why was Hawkeye left on the sidelines? What about Ant-Man? And why did Nick Fury wait until he was in the process of disappearing to call Captain Marvel? Well, there was another character who nobody was asking about, but whose absence was still felt anyway. Erik Killmonger died at the end of Black Panther, and that may have been a bad move for half the MCU. Actor Michael B. Jordan thinks things could have turned out differently had Killmonger still been in Wakanda.Answering a question from The A.V. Club about a fight between Thanos and Killmonger, something fans have had spirited debates about, Jordan gave a surprisingly detailed answer.“This is the first I’m hearing of it,” he said. “I think the one thing about Killmonger is he really plans his attacks, and they’re well thought out. So if he ever stepped in a situation with Thanos, he would feel confident that he had the upper hand—at the very least, he would know he had a shot. So I mean, we already know that Erik’s willing to sacrifice himself for a greater good, so I don’t think he’s ever fearful of losing his life. So I think if he ever stepped in front of Thanos, he’d already have a plan for taking him down.”That… makes a lot of sense. You know, kind of like Jordan spent a whole bunch of time thinking about Killmonger and getting into the characters head. It’s a Marvel twist on the old Batman vs. Superman argument. Thanos may be objectively more powerful. In a one-on-one test of brute strength, Thanos wins every time. But give Killmonger time to prepare, and this whole thing could have been wrapped up in one movie. Killmonger would have an exact plan for taking Thanos down, and he’d execute it with terrifying precision. And nobody would have to disintegrate at all.Poster for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (Photo via Disney/Marvel)Finally, it’s been more than a week since Disney fired James Gunn from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 and the Marvel Cinematic Universe altogether. In the days since, there’s been an outpouring of support from fans and others in the industry for the director he’s become since he made some offensive jokes ten years ago. Now, the cast of the Guardians of the Galaxy movies has weighed in. Each shared a joint statement, signed by all of them, about their feelings on the firing. While it doesn’t go as far as asking that Gunn get his job back (it’s directed towards fans, not Disney), it is a measured defense of the person they spent the last few years working with. It’s a plea for sanity, and a reminder to consider that what you post on social media isn’t as ephemeral as it feels. I realize that’s antithetical to how Twitter works, but it’s becoming increasingly clear the entire website was a mistake. Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. Netflix VP Cindy Holland on #Marvel series: There’s always an ongoing discussion as to whether we will spin off additional characters. #TCA18— Debra Birnbaum (@debrabirnbaum) July 29, 2018When Disney announced their own proprietary streaming service to compete with Netflix, many assumed it would be the end for these series. That doesn’t seem to be the case, probably because they’re (as far as anyone knows) incredibly popular. They’re also much more violent than pretty much anything Marvel does in the MCU movies. It might not be in Disney’s interest to have a brighter, cartoony Avengers movie right next to a TV show where a man impales his jaw on a metal spike in the first couple episodes. (Man, Daredevil Season One was good.)So which characters are next in line to have their own series? The most obvious right now would be the Daughters of the Dragon. Misty Knight and Colleen Wing had one of the best fight scenes in Season Two of Luke Cage (and that season was full of great fights). You can’t tell me there wasn’t one person involved in the making of that scene who wasn’t, at least a little, thinking about it as a trial run for a Daughters of the Dragon spinoff. Jessica Henwick and Simone Missick work so well together too. If anyone needs to have their own series, it’s them. Hellcat/Patsy/Trish Walker from Jessica Jones is another possibility, but if that happens, it won’t be until at least after Season Three. The show spent the last season building her up as a rival/antagonist for Jessica, and it’s going to have to deal with that before spinning Hellcat off into her own series.(Via Marvel)Over on the movies side of the MCU, concept artist Charlie Wen revealed some of his original designs for Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir. Wen was initially brought on to work on The Avengers, but he was soon tasked with designing the look of Thor’s hammer for Kenneth Branagh’s Thor. Designing something like this isn’t a quick job. Not only does it have to look good onscreen and fit the world of the film, it has to make a cool toy as well. Wen shared a whole page of Mjolnir concepts on his Instagram page. Iron Fist showed off some footage of Season Two at Comic Con, and it surprised pretty much everyone in attendance. It looked good. The fighting was reportedly fluid and competently choreographed, which is really important for a show about a martial arts master. Better late than never, I guess. Now, the general public has its first glimpse of the new season. It doesn’t show us a whole lot, but we do see one important detail. One that was sorely missing from both Season One and The Defenders. Danny Rand’s yellow mask. Man, imagine how different these movies would have looked with some of these designs. I like how they start off very understated, almost like something you’d find in the average garage. Then, as you go further down, they get more ornate. I think that green glowing one three in from the left on the bottom is my favorite. Even though that’s probably an example of Wen intentionally going to far to see what Feige is comfortable with. It just looks so alien and beautiful. It looks like something Loki would design and then be very angry that his brother got to wield. Now that Thor’s hammer is gone and he’s taken up a new weapon, it’s cool to look back and see what might have been. Especially since we’re all so familiar with how the hammer ended up. Stay on target James Gunn Once Again Directing ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’Dark Phoenix Trailer Released & More Marvel Movie News last_img read more

Love Simon and Disney actor Joey Pollari comes out as gay

first_imgLove, Simon star Keiynan Lonsdale talks coming out on setLove, Simon director on why Simon doesn’t use Grindr, chances of sequelBritish model Zander Hodgson comes out as gayRead the full article on Gaystarnews:  : It’s a role Pollari played before. His big break came in 2016 when he starred in the second season of American Crime. In the series, he played a closted basketball player accused of sexual assault.His biggest hurdle in coming out was the shame.‘I do believe a system of power, of patriarchy, of masculinity did impact me,’ he explained. He added that his identity didn’t match his own idea of himself and he had to come to terms with that.The real scary stuffAfter he came out, he found his perceived fears didn’t come to light. Instead, it was a lot more normal.‘The real scary stuff and the real exciting stuff is falling in love with someone,’ he said. It’s something anyone can relate to, regardless of sexual identity.Love, Simon also encouraged him to think about and embrace representation.‘It’s part of my goal to be more transparent, especially in the public sphere,’ he shared. ‘I mean, that’s why I go to the movies… I go to learn something about someone else. In a byproduct, I learn about myself. That’s the power of representation.’Got a news tip? Want to share your story? Email us . Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… The actor, who got his start in Disney Channel movies, opened up about his sexuality in an interview with The Advocate.In Love, Simon, Pollari plays Lyle, a guy who works at the local Waffle House and is a potential love interest for the titular protagonist. It’s a charming and memorable, if short-lived role.However, the story still resonated with him.‘His experience was similar to mine,’ he said.In the movie, Simon is a closeted gay high school teen. He knows his own identity, but hasn’t shared it with anyone in his personal life.‘The only part that was difficult was me coming out to myself. And I think that is the most difficult coming-out,’ Pollari continued. ‘I think all my friends and family knew on some level. I think maybe two people were shocked.’ GAYSTARNEWS-center_img Joey Pollari, an actor who appears in the groundbreaking gay teen romance movie Love, Simon, recently came out as gay. Pollari in Love, Simon. | Photo: YouTube/20th Century Fox eTN Chatroom for Readers (join us)last_img read more

New research highlights what Chinese guests want from Australian hotel

first_imgNew research highlights what Chinese guests want from Australian hotelsThe sixth annual Chinese International Travel Monitor released by™ has revealed that Chinese travellers are spending a whopping 28 per cent of their income on average on international travel. They also intend to spend 10 per cent more on travel in the next 12 months, with Australia topping the list as the most desired destination in Asia-Pacific.Regardless of many key indicators showing signs of a slowdown in the Chinese economy, this year’s CITM found spending on travel increased across all age brackets, with Chinese travellers spending US$3,600 in the last 12 months – more than a quarter of their income and an increase of 4 per cent compared with the previous year. 90s millennials are the biggest spenders, allocating 35 per cent of their income to travel.93 per cent of Australian hoteliers surveyed in the research said they accommodated Chinese travellers, with 55 per cent observing growth of the market over the last 12 months. According to the data, Australia was deemed the third most welcoming country to Chinese travellers, up one place from 2016.Despite this, the report revealed a gap in what Chinese guests want versus what hotels are providing, highlighting that, by making some adaptions to accommodate Chinese tourists, there is huge potential for Australian hotels to further tap into this market.While Australian hotels are focusing their efforts on social media and marketing programs in a bid to attract Chinese travellers, the investment in on-site services for Chinese guests has decreased according to the data, with only 5 per cent spending more than US$10,000.The report identified key areas where hotels could improve their services, according to Chinese travellers: Chinese payment facilities at hotels, such as UnionPay, rank second for consumers in importance, yet only 18 per cent of AU hotels currently offer these facilities. Indeed, only 15 per cent intend to offer them in the next 12 months. In-house Mandarin speaking staff was ranked number one by travellers but was low on the list for hoteliers, with only 16 per cent currently offering the service and 11 per cent planning to in the next 12 months.On-site Chinese restaurants were ranked fifth by travellers however only 3 per cent of hoteliers currently offer this service. Only 5 per cent intend to provide it in the next 12 months.Translated travel guides were ranked number four by travellers but are a low in priority for hoteliers; 14 per cent currently offer this and only 17 per cent plan to in Marketing Manager for Australia and New Zealand, David Spasovic says both the perception of Australia as a welcoming destination, and willingness of accommodation providers to cater to Chinese travellers is critical to ensuring sustainability of the local tourism industry.“As Australia’s second largest inbound tourist market[1], there’s no doubt that Chinese travellers offer huge economic benefits to our country. It’s fantastic to see Australia continues to deliver quality and friendly hospitality and is proud to partner with accommodation providers who work hard to ensure Chinese travellers feel welcome in our beautiful country. Despite this, Australia has fallen two places since topping the wish list of countries to visit last year.“The CITM report notes that Chinese travellers have entered a new phase in their evolution and are demanding more of everything – more time travelling, more locations and more diverse experiences. With Tourism Australia estimating up to AU$13 billion in total expenditure by Chinese travellers by 2020[2], it’s vital that hoteliers adapt to these evolving needs and develop tailored hotel services that tap into their enormous spending power.”The rise of the ‘more generation’The survey reported all age groups traveling more often and for longer, with the number of trips and number of days per trip increasing in the past year from 3 to 4 and from 5 to 7 days, respectively. Chinese travellers are also visiting multiple cities per trip, with over 80 per cent saying they would not just stay in a single city.The average amount spent per day also increased – up 8 per cent from 2016 – with dining, sightseeing and rest and relaxation activities proving most popular. Interestingly, shopping took a dive from last year – dropping from 68 per cent in 2016 to 33 per cent in 2017, and indicating the increasing diversification of Chinese travel preferences.Independent travel, including backpacking, is well and truly in for this increasingly discerning, experience-hungry group of travellers, with 50 per cent saying they are interested in this type of travel. Only 37 per cent said they will take part in group tours in the future, according to the research.Source = Hotels.comlast_img read more

US Bancorp Escapes Most Banks Q1 Fate

first_imgU.S. Bancorp Escapes Most Banks’ Q1 Fate in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News April 21, 2016 482 Views Q1 Earnings Statement U.S. Bancorp 2016-04-21 Seth Welborncenter_img Share It has largely been a dismal first quarter for banks as far as profits go. Last week, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Citigroup, and PNC all reported substantial year-over-year declines. In the area of investment banking, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley both reported significant over-the-year declines in net earnings.U.S. Bancorp went against that trend, however. In the bank’s Q1 earnings statement released on Tuesday, U.S. Bancorp reported a first quarter net income of $1.386 billion, down by only 3 percent from Q1 2015’s net income of $1.43 billion. The price per diluted common share, $0.76 percent, remained unchanged over-the-year in Q1. The bank’s average total loans grew by 5.8 percent over the first quarter up to $14.3 billion, and ROE and efficiency ratio were reported at 13 percent and 54.6 percent, respectively.According to the announcement, lower mortgage revenue was partially behind U.S. Bancorp’s 3 percent year-over-year decline in net income. The lower mortgage banking revenue was due to lower production and higher noninterest expense. Other factors that drove the slight decline in net income were a higher provision for credit losses driven by energy-related commercial loan downgrades. The bank experienced a 6 percent decline over-the-quarter in net income that was driven by, among other factors, seasonality in some of the bank’s business lines and a higher provision for credit losses driven by energy-related loans.“U.S. Bancorp is off to a solid start in 2016 as we once again delivered industry-leading performance metrics against a backdrop of global concerns driving long-term interest rates lower and continuing pressure in the energy sector,” said U.S. Bancorp Chairman and CEO Richard K. Davis. “We continued to produce strong loan and deposit growth which combined with a stable net interest margin, resulted in growth in net interest income. Our payments-related businesses remain strong and we continue to invest in those businesses, as demonstrated by the acquisition of the $1.6 billion retail card portfolio at the end of 2015. Although the pressures from the energy industry negatively impacted the quarter, we took appropriate measures and remain confident that we are well positioned to continue delivering industry-leading returns throughout the year.”Residential mortgages partially drove the 5.8 percent over-the-year increase in average total loans; residential mortgages at U.S. Bancorp grew by 5.4 percent over-the-year in Q1 and by 2.3 percent over-the-quarterClick here to view the entire earnings report.last_img read more